The trouble with simple living is that, though it can be joyful, rich, and creative, it isn't simple. ~Doris Janzen Longacre

The best way to bring a sustainable change in the world around me is by bringing the change in myself

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween

Happy Halloween to all our fellow bloggers and their families out there.

Exciting time for little ones dressing up and door knocking. Our neighbours are off to a Halloween party tonight, and the kids are coming early, so here's their treat.

All I did was some lunch bags, poped in a few lollies, tried up with a red ribbon.

Knitting needle holder

Here is the solution to knitting needles always going missing, mine go walk abouts but not anymore. Saw a lady on TV making one, never got the pattern for that one, so I designed my own from memory. In hind sight I should have checked out how many needles I got and made it a little bigger. That was before Mom gave me her knitting needles as well, now I really need to make another soon.

This is my crochet version but I want to knit the next one.

This is not a beginners pattern, not because it's hard but it's a big project to start with! This pattern is great for all those left over bits from other projects, just make sure you have enough for the first section, then you can swap to a contrasting colour for the 2nd section. Accomodates 14 sets of needles.

You will need a chunky yarn, or 2 strands of 8 ply no5/6 knitting needles

There are 3 different steps to follow

First section: Cast on 100 sts and knit in stocking stitch or what ever design takes your fancy, I like strips so that's what I will do. Changing colour every 5th row. Place a Marker at 6 cm on both sides of the piece. Knit a block/piece long enough to accomodate your longest knitting needle, then cast off.

2nd section: Cast on 100 sts and knit 6cms in the design of your choice again mark it.

We need to make holes for the needles to fit in, continue following

this pattern:

Both sections can be crocheted if prefered.

Row 1: knit 2 sts, knit 2 together, wrap yarn around needle (to make up the lost stitch), knit1, knit2 tog, wyan, knit 1, knit 2 tog, 32 times .... to the end ending with knit 2.

Row 2: Purl to end

Row 3: Knit as per row 1 to end

Row 4: Purl to end

Row 5: Knit to end

Row 6: Purl to end

Row 7 + 9: Knit same as 1 + 3

Row 8: Purl to end

Row 10, 11 + 12: knit as 4,5 +6

Continue until with pattern until block/piece measures same a section 1.

End with 2 rows stocking stitch, then cast off.

Lay blocks on top of each other, sew/tack together depending on how you want to finish it off, I would crochet them together with a frilly edge, or you could blanket stitch them together, as part of your embelishment. Sew on a loop, place needle through the holes, roll it up, giving you the correct spot to place your button, careful not to sew it through both blocks. Or you could just tie a ribbon or cord around it.

Crochet version:

Now to continue block 2, cast off after 6 cm. Pick up stitches on section 1 with your hook from the 6 cm mark. Or you could just skip section 2 so far and pick up stitches on the side

of section 1.

Row1: crochet to the end

Row 2: cro. 2 treb. st. make 2 chain st. 2 treb. st. 2 chain st. 2 treb ...... to end

Row 3: continue with row 2 until the section is the same as section 1, finishing off as Row 1. Fold over and tack sides.

Finish off as above.

Now I still need to figure out what I am going to do about those hooks that go missing.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Veggie garden update .....

Let take a little peep into the veggie patch, it's new so don't expect to much yet!

Tub of potatoes have a few flowers on them, Italian parsley is going to seed and the oregano is growing well.

Sweet corn seedlings, a few beans and still waiting for the squash seed to germinate.

Tomato seedlings are thriving, Curly parsley is going to seed and mustard plant is getting a flower.

Mustard seedlings and selfseeding Rocket coming up.

looking good so far!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Another Bed Sock Pattern

Lets make some bed sock/slippers.

Here's an easy one for you, you will need 2 balls or 100 gr of yarn 8ply and size 5 knitting needles. In this pair I used two colours to start with then changed to one colour. Using double thread through out cause I like thick socks.

Cast on 40 sts using double thread.
Knit 2 rows plain
3rd row knit 2 st, wool over needle and knit 2 tog ( to make a hole for the cord) and same on the other side Knit 2 tog, w o n, knit 2 sts.
Knit 3 rows plain and 4th row make holes for the cord again.
9/10 holes down the side should be enough.
Change pattern by knitting a rib ( 1 plain ,1 purl)or double rib2 plain ,2 purl)
knit about 36 rows ( measure your foot on the knitting piece, should be half way up your toes) next row: knit 2 sts together across the whole needle 20 sts.
Knit the next row, turn and knit 2 together again 10 sts.
Cast off. to sew the sides up, fold work and sew the heel closed, then sew the toes closed up to the holes for the cord/ribbon.

Kids slippers.

Just cast on 32 stitch follow pattern as above 5/6/7 holes according to kids foot and so on..........

Wishing everyone warm toasty feet
Until nexttime

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Bunker for my secret stash ....

Women you going to need a bunker for all this stuff!

Maybe not so secret anymore for my readers but DH has no idea what in those plastic tubs, all he know every now and again he adds another to the already growing stack of tubs. Plenty of storage in our 20 ft container at the farm if only I can get him to throw away some of that wood he has piled up in there, maybe this december holidays we can do some sorting there. I need to unpack and (supprise myself with everything in the tubes)organize it better. Maybe even move the container to a new spot where the double carport was going to be. Then put a double carport roof over it and still a single parking spot. Thinking about it I will need to get My mate Mark the dingoman to come in with his Kango excarvator and level the site for me ....

What's in the tubs? New linen, towels, dishclothes, craft supplies, materials, yarn, secondhand novels (opshop) and reference books and kids school supplies. Toileties and Toilet paper. New kitchenware. Things to start a new home. And the list goes on .....

Why all this stuff ... yeh I am a hoarder but this is all to replace my existing stuff which is really geting old and worn through. DH got very excited when I bought new bedding for our bed a few weeks ago, told him that's something to look forward too ... atleast that went straight on the bed. He even commented about the matching towels. So see I don't like spending money and changing to a new deco every season.

One thing I have been stockpiling is medical supplies as in a large quantity of bandages, plasters, dressings,anything that could be needed in the bush. We are very lucky to have a resident Doctor in our villiage, he moved from the Blue Mountains when his wife had premature twin babies about 12 years ago ... thats our treechanging/hugging Doctor Paul.

Aren't we lucky there's not many Doctors living in small towns anymore.

Until next time

Monday, October 19, 2009

Pictures of my grandsons

Just a couple of pics I took of the boys, should have take more, usually I do but some how I slipped up badly this holiday. Also we never got to go to Coff Harbour as planned ... long story so maybe next time.

Cobi enjoyed feeding Daisy her bottle.

The boys at the skate park with their new skate boards.

The boys made a friend, maybe they get to play together next holidays.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Homemade Thin Crust Pizza

Dear Daughter loves pizzas, making them from scratch then adding her favorite toppings Yummy. So here's the recipe and there's no yeast.

Base: makes 1 large pizza
1 1/2 cup flour
1 Tablespoon Baking Powder
1/4 t Salt
1/2 cup hot water
2 Tablespoons Olive oil

Mix and knead for 5 mins, flour the benchtop and roll dough out. Spray baking tray, place on tray and add your favorite toppings.
This is one I had the otherday, with marinated eggplant, sundried tomatoes, pepperoni and tasty cheese.

Tonights pizza has olives, sundried tomatoes, tomatoes, feta, tasty cheese and a sprinkle of herbs.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Composting with sheep poo and hay

Our Gardening Friend Mr Pete Cundle, who was the presenter on ABC Gardening was a great inspiration to many gardeners in Australia. He used to love using Sheep poo in his garden beds and boy everything just seemed to be twice the size.

So having all these sheep here, made me think I needed a open compost bin just for their used bedding hay and poop. So my very helpful son constructed one for me with star pickets and colourbond sheet.

And has it worked a treat so far, a place to dispose of the bedding and boy can it get out of hand cause the shed got cleaned out every 3rd day. Then limed and new hay put down, yeh they ate the new hay the first day but lucky not all of it.

Now check out the compost, it's getting there, nearly ready to use. The pile has shrunk down by 1/4 and it's only been 3 months since I started filling the bin up.

Miss Bella is nearly as big as her mum. And Proud Father Nelson needs a Cigar for his efforts.

Miss Daisy and Miss Stella having a game.

Can't believe how they differ in size, the baby of the family has finally been named. And Stella it will be. So we got Bella, Stella, Molly and Polly. the boys are Lamb and Chop, sorry Boys.

Until nexttime

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

New veggie patch at Mulgoa farm

Ah who can say they got two veggie patches .... well I can .... pumpkin patch on the farm at Bellbrook and one at Mulgoa Farm in Sydney. One of the long overdue projects. At least the landlord had no objection to us planting posts and using his gate, cause he loves fresh herbs and chillis, always sending the kids to fetch some. Well here are a few of the pics I took today.

But first I took this picture of Miss Daisy and the sheep, in the background is the sheep shed we built, see it two toned ... green and green. Everything here is green ... running joke already.

Seedlings planted ... yellow marigolds, tomatoes, mixed capsicums and silverbeet. Replanted some red mustard seedlings.
Seeds sown... lebanese zucchinni and more silverbeet.
Planted spubs in a half 45 gallon drum.

The frog with it's bright yellow raincoat and unbrella was given to me by Luke one of my grandsons.